Noisy Miners... a second attempt

To: Birding-aus <>
Subject: Noisy Miners... a second attempt
From: "Brian Everingham" <>
Date: Sun, 2 Jul 2006 17:22:21 +1000
I watched with fascination and horror as a mob of Noisy Miner attacked a
Spotted Dove in our garden today. The blood curdling calls of the Miners
brought more and more to the affray and the Dove had no recourse but to go
to ground.

Not wanting death so near at hand we managed to create enough confusion so
the dove had an opportunity to escape into the carport and under our car.
The miners did not disperse. They stayed, in screaming mode, despite
blandishments by way of hose, calls, etc.

I am a little confused by this behaviour. Miners are famous for mobbing and
I expect it. I do not, however, know what purpose it serves. Miners eat
lerps or take nectar and insects. They "farm" an area. However there seems
little possible competition from a dove. Surely this is, in biological
terms, a waste of energy.

Yes, miners are native to Australia. Spotted doves are introduced. Yet I
could not watch. No, it was not the squeamish behaviour of one who hates to
see killing. That might be a motive. But, somewhere deep inside, I also know
the Miner is out of control. It is native to Australia but it also happens
to have a much extended range, courtesy of human modification of landscape,
and this mobbing behaviour is also one of the key reasons why so many small
native birds have gone from our gardens.

Brian Everingham
PO Box 269
NSW 2233

To unsubscribe from this mailing list, send the message: unsubscribe (in the body of the message, with no Subject line)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the archive e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU